„Meg-(...)” vagy „(...) meg”?

I have noticed both – but are they interchangeable?

Amikor eljöttem a híd végéhez megtalálkoztam egy barátot.

Amikor eljöttem a híd végéhez találkoztam meg egy barátot.

Also: would placing el after the verb also be correct?

Amikor jöttem el a híd végéhez megtalálkoztam egy barátot.

Would there be a difference here? Can any of these kicsi szók be written both as ordinary adverbs and adverbial prefixes?

June 9, 2018


None of them. The verb találkoztam never has "meg".

Amikor eljöttem a híd végéhez, találkoztam egy baráttal/barátommal.

June 9, 2018


What about találtam?

Would both megtaláltam and találtam meg be alright?

Also: is the use of the -val ending mandatory? I used the accusative case here. Is that wrong only with találkozik or also with talál?

June 9, 2018

Would both megtaláltam and találtam meg be alright?

Separating the verb prefix or not is a complicated question, I cannot explain it well. But I found a link:

Találkoztam egy baráttal: Yes, here you need the -val ending.

Találtam egy tollat. Találtam egy barátot. Here the accusative is the good choice. (and -val would be wrong)

Találkoztam and találtam are different verbs. Találkozni means to meet with somebody, and találni is to find something/somebody

Találkoztam egy baráttal. I met with a friend. Találtam egy barátot. I found a friend.

June 9, 2018

Köszönöm szépen a segítségedet azokkal a példákkal, Zsuzsi!

June 10, 2018
  • azokkal a példákkal (or azzal a példával) it should be both plural or both singular:)
June 12, 2018

I know that! I was in a hurry ;-) Thanks, though!

June 14, 2018

Maybe there is something that was not mentioned about finding things :)

You use 'megtaláltam', if it is a specific thing. Megtaláltam a tollat, megtaláltam a tollam, megtaláltam a barátom. Always 'the'. On the other hand 'találtam egy tollat' - 'a pen'.

However this might have exceptions, for example to rescue someone is usually 'megmentek egy' / 'megmentem a', no matter that it is specific or not.

'Meg' is really complex and it also can modify the meaning of the verb like 'áll' and 'megáll valamit' (stands, can resist doing something).

You should switch the order if it comes to denial or negative. 'Nem találtam meg a tollat' - 'I did not find the pen'. 'Nem találtam egy tollat sem' - 'I did not find any pens'. This is some general rule with 'meg-'.

June 10, 2018

Thanks a lot, uj.mappa! So from what I gather, the meg- prefix doesn't always change the aspect of the verb.

I wrote látogattam once, intending to tell someone about a visit I had made in the past. Then I was told that meglátogattam was a much better choice, as I'm not seeing these people on a regular basis.

As I understand you, this rule doesn't apply to every verb. This meg- business actually changed my views on Hungarian being quite easy. I almost always make mistakes with this little word. So I am very grateful for any help with it.

June 14, 2018
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